Single ticket

Another postcard from the land of grief

As I continue to live in this new land of grief, I am struck by the parallels with other times when I have stayed away from home. At first, you can be so taken with the novelty of what you see around you, that the country you have left behind seems shabby, or dull, or uninteresting by comparison. Stay a little longer, and some of the quirks of what you have left behind assume a kind of rosy glow, making you curious to sample them once again. Stay longer still, and the limitations of the new place may become rather more annoying than the ones you have left behind. In short, it is time to go back.

The comparison is not altogether fair, since the travels I describe above have always been ones I have chosen to undertake. Not so on this occasion. Furthermore, going back is not an option. I cannot go back to where I used to live – my ticket was one way. That is not to say that I am stuck here though. There is a path – but it lies ahead, rather than behind. I have not been here long enough to discern it yet- but I know that it is ‘over there’ in Another Place.

Yesterday I paid a visit to Anthony Gormley’s artwork of the same name – a place I had last visited with Fiona. The statues still stand there – stock still and staring out to sea. Sometimes they are hidden, sometimes they stand tall – but always they turn their steely gaze to another place.

I was especially struck by the figure below. The waves were lapping at his chest, and all but engulfing him. He is unmoved though – and he continues to look to Another Place. I am hoping that I can do the same…


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